By Francis Obinor

SECTOR Specialists led by Bob Docherty, a Rail Business Specialist, will visit the country on October 5, 2011.

Fehintola Odulaja, Trade Development Manager at the British Deputy High Commission Lagos, said the delegation would visit key officials and business people to learn how Britain can partner and contribute to the commercial development of Nigeria’s transport infrastructure.

“Efficient transport networks are vital to economic development, which in turn impacts on prosperity and the creation of new jobs.  The visit may assist in stimulating interest in the transport sector and opportunities for local partnerships.”

Odulaja said further that the UK Trade & Investment Nigeria team based at the British Deputy High Commission would welcome the delegation comprising leading UK experts in the rail, ports and airports sectors who would be conducting a transport fact finding mission.

“The delegation will visit key officials and business people to learn how the UK can partner and contribute to the commercial development of Nigeria’s transport infrastructure.”

According to Odulaja, UK companies have worldwide experience working in partnership with local firms and client organisations to successfully deliver major transport projects.

“The UK has been at the forefront of airport development from the early 1900s right up to the present day. Our strengths cover all the airport disciplines: design; project management; construction; security systems; specialist equipment manufacture and commissioning to privatisation; operations; maintenance and training.

British airport companies have worked all over the world, not only on design and construction projects – such as the new Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong, John F Kennedy (New York), Beijing Terminal three and Madrid airports – but more recently in the operation, ownership and commercial development of international airports.

Odulaja continued: “The transformation of the UK ports industry in recent decades has created a thriving and highly competitive industry which is developing world class facilities using leading edge technology and innovative financial solutions. UK companies are also playing a lead role in developing and adopting practices that enable Ports to meet the global threat of terrorism and climate change.

“The UK rail sector has a particularly strong specialist service sector and can provide expertise in areas such as regulation, safety, PPP, taxation and legal issues. The UK also has world leading capability in engineering consultancy and station design, transport consultancies and signalling.

“The UK also has excellent manufacturing capability with advanced production techniques providing high performance equipment that meets the latest technical and legislative standards. There is an industry-wide commitment to improve the sustainability of rail transport at every level, from the use of cleaner, more energy-efficient technologies and practices to improving performance, affordability and accessibility.”

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